Regeneration in Wales is being hindered by the “complex and cumbersome” approach taken by the country’s 22 local authorities.
A report by the Wales Audit Office, published last Friday, also found that funding was generally given over too short a period and that results of regeneration work were not properly monitored.
As a result, the Regeneration and Improvement Study said it was “impossible” to evaluate the success of any initiatives.
A number of problems were cited, but chief among these was the inability of many local authorities to co-ordinate regeneration projects and to make “the partnership approach work”.
Jeremy Colman, the auditor general, said: “The approach must be simplified. There is an urgent need for better co-ordinated and simpler frameworks at national and local level.”
The WAO made a number of recommendations including simplified and longer-term funding structures by the Welsh Assembly Government and the development of 10-year regeneration strategies for projects.
Graham Moore, chief executive of the only Welsh urban regeneration company, Newport Unlimited, said: “The certainty of funding is a major issue. If you don’t have this the private sector will be very sceptical and not get involved. I am not sure how much appetite there will be to make the recommended changes.”